Teaser Tuesday, new section from revisions

I've mentioned that I'm working on revisions for Those Lost at Sea and Drowned, and I wanted to post a section I've redone. The original version had Isabelle hearing her father's voice about a month after he'd killed himself (if you're new to the story, she can hear spirits but has renounced her powers after a terrifying childhood encounter in a haunted room) and shutting him out instantly, but I realized I'd missed a good opportunity to shed some light on what kind of relationship they'd had. So I'm trying this out:

Hoping that a good night's sleep would take the strain from my features, I went to bed while it was still light. As I was drifting off, I heard someone whisper my name.

"Papa?" I was still half asleep, but even in my groggy state my father's death seeped into my memory. "No—"

A pressure in my ears, and the voice came again, "Isabelle, listen . . ."

"No, I won't listen." I curled the pillow around my head. "Not even for my own father. That way madness lies, and I can't bear it."

"Filial ingratitude! In such a night to shut me out! Your old kind father . . ." His dramatic delivery ended in a chuckle and I wondered if he'd gone mad.

Despite myself, I sat up and was about to question him when I recognized his words from Shakespeare's King Lear. We'd made a game of it since I was a child—entire conversations trading lines from literary works.

"No, I will weep no more," I said, keeping to the same passage. "The tempest in my mind doth from my senses take all feeling. No more of that."

He must have gotten my meaning that if I let him in it would open the way for other spirits, for Papa did not speak up again. I squeezed my eyes shut and rolled into a ball, and eventually I dropped off to an undisturbed rest.

P.S. go to the Novels page above or click on the Teaser Tuesday label to see more teasers from this book


Unknown said...

this passage has so much more emotion in it now. nicely done :)

Marieke said...

I love the idea of trading lines! (Even more so because my MCs do the same :) ) Loved this :)

Angelica R. Jackson said...

Whew, thanks Karla--I knew you'd call me on it if it still needed work!

And Marieke, that's so funny, here I thought I was being so original! I didn't start out intending to do this; she had the quote from Shakespeare in her dialogue, and when I went to look up the passage I saw all these other lines that would fit a conversation between them. So I decided to make it into a game they've always played with each other.

Unknown said...

This is super-cool. I love the premise and this eerie-familiar interaction. So many shades of thought in this one little excerpt!

Writing Writerly things said...

I feel for your MC, it must be hard to be afraid and at the same time to want to know. Love the emotions in this passage.

Melanie said...

love love LOVE it. So cool how you put that Shakespeare thing in there. Really give a cool sense of the relationship they had and then the way you have her tell him to leave you alone was so darn cool. Nice job Angelica.

Angelica R. Jackson said...

Thanks, Shadya, Marilyn, and Melanie for the feedback. I hate it when you're so deep in the rewrites that you can't tell if you've made something worse or better. That's what the period of leaving it alone for a while, letting it gestate, is for but I'm not there yet.

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